DETROIT – The Detroit Lions overcame a rash of turnovers for an epic comeback win Sunday over the last-place Chicago Bears.
Halftime lead despite slow start
The Lions got off to a very slow start, allowing a touchdown drive on the opening possession and turning the ball over twice in the first quarter.
Both turnovers were Jared Goff interceptions on the first and second possessions, and he nearly threw a 98-yard pick-six on the third drive, which eventually ended in a game-tying touchdown.
The Lions’ defense stepped up after those turnovers, forcing a punt and a fumble to get the ball back to the offense.
At halftime, the Lions had a 14-10 lead. But it didn’t last long.
Mistakes continue to mount
The first drive after the break got off to a strong start, but Goff took a bad sack on 3rd and 1 near midfield, which forced a punt. Chicago kicked a field goal to pull within one point.
Then, Craig Reynolds fumbled the ensuing kickoff, giving the ball right back to the Bears with great field position. Justin Fields hit D.J. Moore from 39 yards out to give the Bears a 20-14 lead.
Goff continued to struggle on the following drive, as a tipped ball was picked off for his third turnover of the game. That gave the Bears another chance to start in Lions’ territory, and they took advantage, driving into field goal range and taking a 23-14 lead.
The Lions started their next drive with a sack, and then on 3rd and 13, Goff missed a wide open Sam LaPorta and was nearly picked off for the fourth time. Detroit had to punt, and the game was teetering on being beyond reach.
Two backbreaking third-down conversions -- one via penalty and one via Fields scramble -- allowed the Bears to drain 8:45 off the clock before kicking a field goal to increase their lead to 12.
The Lions didn’t get the ball back until there was 4:15 remaining in the fourth quarter. It looked grim, to say the least.
Detroit’s late push
Goff and the Lions wouldn’t go down quietly, though. Amon-Ra St. Brown and Jahmyr Gibbs made a couple of key catches to get the Lions into Chicago territory, and then Goff hit Jameson Williams from 32 yards out for a touchdown that brought the score to 26-21.
The entire drive took just 1:16 off the clock.
Dan Campbell elected to kick the ball deep and give his defense a chance to make a key stop. It turned out to be the right call. Chicago went three-and-out, running only 26 seconds off the clock before punting the ball back to the Lions.
Goff took over from his own 27-yard line and got to work. David Montgomery had two long runs and made another catch to get the Lions deep into Chicago territory. He eventually bulldozed his way in from one yard out to give the Lions a 1-point lead.
Goff hit LaPorta for the 2-point conversion, which put the Lions up three points.
Aidan Hutchinson calls game
The Bears had 22 seconds to try to get into field goal range, but on the very first play, Aidan Hutchinson sacked Fields and stripped the ball out. The ball careened backwards through the end zone for a safety.
Detroit recovered the onside kick, and kneeled out an epic victory.